I am incredibly sensitive to my surroundings when I'm trying to get work done. Every detail is an opportunity for procrastination or avoidance; My back is to the door! Not enough surface area! Lighting is all wrong! I CAN'T WORK LIKE THIS WHAT'S ON HULU?! So it's no surprise that I have had 3 offices in our apartment in 2 and a half years. 

Having a functional office is becoming more and more important to me. The clients keep coming and I'm tired of spreading out on our dining room table, shuffling salt & pepper shakers and cups of pens around (I CAN'T WORK LIKE THIS!). So in the middle of a heavy week of client work I freaked out and went on a office-improvement rampage, telling myself that my clients would get better work out of me if I had a proper office even if said work might come a day later than expected. 

I started with the Oh What fun! sign. Facebook demanded that I keep it and I agreed. If there's ever been another way of putting how I feel about my job I haven't heard it, so having it above my desk would be, like, perfect. I knew in my bones that the desk needed to be an L shape and white. I knew I wanted to get not-finished canvases by unknown artists to use as cork boards. I knew I wanted all my crafting/decorative nonsense to be visible and within reach, otherwise I reach for Hulu. I knew that between Ikea, UrbanOre, and Out of the Closet I'd be set and I was right!

YAY! Ikea supplied the desk, Out of the Closet sold me those shelves for $10.50, and UrbanOre had 4 canvases I had to have, 2 of which are too pretty to use as cork boards. My client/friend Jessica had given me that chair, the coolest office chair ever known to humankind, and the rest was thrifted at estate sales and stores around the East Bay. 

Here's what I was working with before. Shoot, that's embarrassing. 

 I CAN'T WORK LIKE THIS!

I CAN'T WORK LIKE THIS!

Let's tour the new digs, shall we?

 Is that a handwritten note from Emily Henderson? Yes it is a handwritten note from Emily Henderson. That excellent photo of a fireman's boots is by my friend  Solon .

Is that a handwritten note from Emily Henderson? Yes it is a handwritten note from Emily Henderson. That excellent photo of a fireman's boots is by my friend Solon.

 Do I have a problem? Probably.

Do I have a problem? Probably.

 Always have ribbon at the ready.

Always have ribbon at the ready.

 Yes my chair wears jewelry, doesn't yours?

Yes my chair wears jewelry, doesn't yours?

 Vintage trash cans are the best containers.

Vintage trash cans are the best containers.

 Heck yeah! That horse painting was $14 at UrbanOre and I love it so much.

Heck yeah! That horse painting was $14 at UrbanOre and I love it so much.

 People and memories I love.

People and memories I love.

 Maggie just gave me these vintage darts!

Maggie just gave me these vintage darts!

  Christy  gave me those photo holders!

Christy gave me those photo holders!

 Tools of the trade.

Tools of the trade.

 $4 portrait.

$4 portrait.

 YAAAAY!

YAAAAY!

Look at me! I'm writing this blog post at my desk in my office! It's working!

Whew.

Posted
AuthorSarah Reid

Excuse me while I get super personal on you. I just don't know how to share this project, which I love, without being honest with you about where it came from. So let's get fucking real, shall we?

Matthew and I almost lost each other this winter. We went to the very edge of our relationship and of our sanities. We crashed, burned, drowned, exploded, imploded, choked, bled, freaked out, lay comatose, and all but died. But on January 30th we decided that we were gonna fight like hell for each other, and we did: we fought like hell, we fought in hell, we fought hell itself. On our 11th anniversary, which happened in the middle of all the hellish fighting, I built him/us a present on our living room wall - a calendar of sorts.

I strung one very long piece of rope along the top of the wall and hung other ropes off of it: white cotton, hemp, black and white baker's twine, white and gold wrapping twine, all various thicknesses and lengths. Then I tied a knot in one of the ropes and wrote him a letter inviting him to tie a knot with me at the end of every day to say and to symbolize that on that day we had had each other in our hearts fully.

 I wrote him.

I wrote him.

 Each knot

Each knot

 and every day

and every day

 He wrote me.

He wrote me.

 is a day well spent

is a day well spent

 I love him more.

I love him more.

It's become a really lovely way to end the day: simple, sweet, and totally present with each other. And of course with every day that passes the rope calendar changes shape, which I like very much. We are watching our commitment to each other grow in an external, physical, and visual way. It's gratifying to watch it become more knotted, encouraging to have a ritual at the end of the day that makes me excited for the next, and inspiring to think of how many more knots we're going to tie in our life time.

Speaking of which, we're going to tie the big one very soon. Wha?!

Posted
AuthorSarah Reid

I have read every Nancy Drew book there is. I would get them out from my elementary school library - their yellow spines were a beacon in the stacks. Even though my feminist-self had yet to emerge I sought out stories of independent girls, intelligent girls, and ambitious girls often - I think I knew what garbage lay ahead and was trying to fortify myself against it. Well, probably not, but whatever. I did love that George though.

When I saw a HUGE pile of them at my new favorite store LOOT I knew I had to have one. What for I wasn't sure, until Christmas came and I found myself perplexed, as I am annually, as to what to get my 9-year-old friend Lucy, daughter of Katherine. Having gotten her a locking diary last year that she actually uses I thought I might just do that again. But then it occurred to me that 9-year-old girls like secrets and hiding and locks and such and that if I could find a hollowed out book for her newly-earned cash-moolah (mother's helper!) she might think I was the coolest gift-giver ever, which is always my objective with 9-year-old people.

Well folks, if you want to make some money, steal this idea: make hollowed out books for kids. Dear Amazon: lame. Hello Nancy Drew!

I Googled "How to hollow out a book" and came upon this very helpful guide. Okay! So here's what I did. Also, I haven't given this to Lucy yet, so if you know her, don't tell her!

hollow1.jpg
hollow2.jpg

Start with a paperback book that has a strong spine and feels sturdy.

hollow3.jpg
hollow4.jpg

Make a glue solution: I did 2 spoonfuls of Mod Podge to 1 spoonful of water (you can use Elmers too). Reserving the first couple of pages at the front, hold the pages together firmly while you paint the glue on the 3 exposed edges. You don't need much, just enough to get it wet and covered.

hollow5.jpg
hollow6.jpg

Put something between your reserved front pages and your glued pages (I used post-it notes) and put something heavy on top of it for 20 minutes. Measure and mark a 1/2 inch border around your glued pages.

hollow7.jpg
hollow8.jpg

Begin to cut away your center rectangle with an X-acto knife or box cutter.

hollow9.jpg
hollow10.jpg

It will not look perfect. It will never look perfect. Keep going anyway. I did this over the course of two days. I think if I tried to do it in one sitting I would have hurt myself. Stop at the last page or back cover.

hollow11.jpg
hollow12.jpg
hollow13.jpg
hollow14.jpg

It's okay if the edges are torn up: that is why you reserved some at the front. We will get to them later. Now, glue very thin and very narrow magnets onto the edge of your book with pure glue, not the solution you made earlier (if you want to try to be fancy, hollow out holes for them). Let them dry for 20 minutes. Make sure they are facing the right way so as to attract the corresponding magnets you are about to install in the reserved pages.

hollow15.jpg
hollow16.jpg

While your magnets are drying, carefully scrape out and try to smooth your inner edges. They will never be truly smooth, so give yourself a break and do the best you can. Apply the glue solution to the 4 inner edges as well as the bottom of the hollow. Mod Podge dries clear, so this just helps make the inside of the book more protected.

When your magnets are dry take the closest reserved page and glue it to the rest of the book, closing the hollow up.

hollow17.jpg
hollow18.jpg

Now cut away the page, revealing the hollow. Be as clean and neat as you can. I didn't figure this part out very well - my edges were pretty jagged. But now the magnets and pencil markings are gone at least.

hollow20.jpg
hollow21.jpg

Now here is the tricky part. Take the next two reserved pages and glue magnets between them, again corresponding to the other magnets and facing the right way. Put a heavy thing on them and let dry.

hollow23.jpg
hollow24.jpg

Now glue all your reserved front pages to the front cover. You don't want any loose pages. Let dry.

hollow25.jpg
hollow26.jpg

Even though the magnets are minimally visible, I do wish I had carved out holes for them. Next time. Maybe with a Hardy Boys.

last hollow.jpg

I hope she likes it!

Posted
AuthorSarah Reid
CategoriesMade!

Having canceled Christmas this year in order to go on a cruise (yes, a cruise) we kind of forgot that it was happening until it was upon us and too late to get a card out. Sucks for you because our cards are awesome.

Here we remind you of their awesomeness and give you the never-before-seen outtakes:

official2008.jpg
official 2009.jpg
official 2010.jpg

 In 2008 we decided to contribute to the Annual Family Christmas Card tradition by asking our friend Paul, a photographer and teacher at a local photography school, to take the worst family photos he could. We think he did an excellent job. The best part of the night was when he told his bewildered helper/student to forget everything he had taught her. Zane was mostly mortified by the whole thing, but hid it well and did what Paul told him to do. His participation made us feel like our family just might turn out all right.

portrait1.JPG
portrait3.jpg
portrait5.JPG
portrait8.jpg
portrait9.jpg
portrait10.jpg

In 2009, Paul no longer worked at the photography school and we were late with our concept so we took it upon ourselves to set up a little home studio. As you can see, it paled in comparison but at least we enjoyed our pleated khakis.

badminton5.jpg
badminton3.jpg
badminton6.jpg
badminton8.jpg
badminton9.jpg
badminton2.jpg

For 2010 we went Mime Family, like you do.

mime5.JPG
mime9.JPG
mime2.jpg
mime3.jpg
mime4.jpg
Posted
AuthorSarah Reid
CategoriesMade!